The world of online marketing brings constant changes and, as a business owner, it may be difficult to stay on top of it all. Marketing online is crucial to others knowing about your business, but in doing so, you must adhere to online marketing rules and regulations. Selling products on your website may not seem like a big deal, but there are several documents that you need to create, sign, and submit to actually do so. Below, we'll outline some of the pitfalls we most commonly see with businesses engaging in online marketing, as well as how to avoid them.
Consider everything that you've invested in your business - you've probably spent a great deal of time and money creating an excellent product or service and building a client base. Now, consider what measures you've taken to protect that investment. Have you obtained the proper trademarks and copyrights to prevent others from stealing your hard work?
You should never spend thousands of dollars in marketing without first investing in trademark and copyright registration. In fact, the registration process is relatively simple and can be done more quickly that you would expect. Having copyright and trademark information on your website is the best way to let others know that you're the creator and owner of the product you worked so hard to create.
Essentially, anything created to be used in online marketing for your business should be protected. This includes your logo, trademark, and slogan. Registering each aspect that you will use for marketing will guarantee the ability to keep all of the money that your business makes.
One final consideration regarding trademarks is to similarly ensure that your business is not infringing on another company's or individual's trademark. Be careful of the way in which you use copyrights and trademarks, especially when it concerns competitors or other businesses. Learn more about fair use and how it applies to your business, understanding that fair use does not always apply in commercial situations.
Privacy and Data Collection
You've probably already experienced issues with privacy and data collection as a consumer - perhaps you sign up for one email newsletter from a business you trust, then end up receiving twenty emails from businesses you've never heard of.
It's critical to notify your audience that you are going to collect their personal data, such as email addresses and phone numbers, then inform them what the data will be used for. If you do not use the information in the right way, your business can be sued. Either inform your clients that your business intends to sell their contact information, or send out marketing materials after they sign up.
One common legal matter that we handle often involves advertising. To avoid legal issues, advertisements cannot be unfair, deceptive, or misleading. Create ads that are relevant to the company and to the product. By using misleading advertising, your customers may end up purchasing something they did not actually want. Not only is this bad business, but you can additionally be sued for false advertising.
When it comes to advertising, the best practice is to always be upfront and honest with your customers. Honest advertising and excellent service and product offerings not only help build you a loyal client base, but protect your company from potential lawsuits. Similarly, be wary of comparative advertising, such as telling your clientele that your product is far superior to your competitor's product. This can also expose you to potential liability.
Online marketing can be intimidating, as it exposes your business to potential legal risks if proper protocol is not precisely followed. To keep your business safe, utilize our legal team to review your marketing and advertising efforts. Our expert team will review all of your business' online marketing with a critical eye to ensure compliance and mitigate legal risks to your business. Fill out the form below to receive a free consultation!